Olsson gets contract for new Google campus

Google's King's Cross campus

Fire and risk engineers Olsson, which established its UK headquarters in Manchester last year, will work on Google’s new London campus at Kings Cross.

Olsson moved into the UK market just a year ago, having originally operated out of Australia and New Zealand. The project win will see Olsson work on the fire strategy for the building, working closely with the client, architect and design team.

The news comes following Google’s submission of a planning application to Camden Council for its King’s Cross Campus. This building will be the first, wholly owned and specifically designed Google building outside of the United States.

Construction on the purpose-built 11-storey building, comprising of more than 1 million square feet, of which Google will occupy 650,000sq ft, will start in 2018.

The building, designed by Heatherwick Studio and Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) will feature a natural theme, with all materials sourced through Google’s healthy materials programme.

This new building, combined with its current building at 6 Pancras Square and an additional third building, will create a Google campus with the potential to house 7,000 Google employees.

The new building is being developed from the ground up and will contribute to the Knowledge Quarter and King’s Cross’s growing knowledge-based economy.

Olsson director Sam Lipitott, who alongside former AECOM colleague Simon Lay founded Olsson’s UK presence, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be a part of this team on such a pioneering project.

“In just 12 months we’ve established a UK wide team and partnered with some incredible clients to work on exciting projects, so we are perfectly placed to help Google realise its ambitious vision for this landmark project.”

Thomas Heatherwick, founder of Heatherwick Studio, who jointly designed the new building: “As my home and the home of my studio for more than 15 years, I have a close relationship with King’s Cross. The area is a fascinating collision of diverse building types and spaces and I can’t help but love this mix of massive railway stations, roads, canals and other infrastructure all layered up into the most connected point in London.”

“Influenced by these surroundings, we have treated this new building for Google like a piece of infrastructure too, made from a family of interchangeable elements which ensure that the building and its workspace will stay flexible for years to come.”